Five start-up businesses founded by students and recent graduates from the University of Edinburgh are celebrating after securing almost half a million pounds in grant funding awards between them. The five young companies, all supported by the University’s commercialisation service, Edinburgh Innovations, have been awarded around £100,000 each through SMART:SCOTLAND grants.
The recipients are bennu.ai, developers of the world’s smartest bin which sorts waste automatically for a net zero circular economy; Danu Robotics, a clean tech start-up focused on advanced and dedicated technological solutions for the benefit of the environment; BioLiberty, creators of a soft robotic glove and a digital therapy platform aimed at helping sufferers of hand weakness; eMoodie, a mental health digital platform which facilitates early screening; and transformative audio design and technology company, Black Goblin Audio.
Awarded by Scottish Enterprise to Scottish-based SMEs, SMART:SCOTLAND grants are offered to qualifying high risk, highly ambitious projects with a commercial focus.
In addition to providing guidance for the SMART:SCOTLAND grant applications, Edinburgh Innovations has supported the company founders throughout their entrepreneurial journeys, including helping them to successfully apply for a range of additional national awards. BioLiberty, Danu Robotics and bennu.ai had all been winners in the prestigious business funding competition, Scottish Edge. Meanwhile eMoodie have secured initial seed investment and been recognised by other business award programmes.
Edinburgh Innovations also supported Black Goblin, a female led audio design and technology company developing, ‘Subversive’ – a collaborative audio tool for visual artists and sound designers towards winning the Creative Edge award by Scottish EDGE as well as the Resident Entrepreneurs and Connected Innovators awards from the Creative Technology cluster Creative Informatics. Black Goblin was also selected as a “Ones to watch” company by the Creative Industries Council last year.
Lorna Baird, Student Enterprise Manager, said: “We’re so pleased with the success of these emerging companies, all founded by University of Edinburgh students or graduates, in securing their grant awards from SMART:SCOTLAND. These start-ups are deserving of their significant funding awards as they are all focused on developing innovative solutions to some of the key challenges facing society. As an organisation which is committed to helping University of Edinburgh-linked start-up businesses reach their full potential, Edinburgh Innovations is proud of its role in supporting these budding entrepreneurs.”
Jim Watson, Director of Business Growth at Scottish Enterprise, said: “SMART:SCOTLAND grants are an effective way of encouraging Scottish businesses to innovate and helping them attract additional funding.
“The cutting-edge products and services being developed by these five companies are great examples of the pioneering work supported by SMART and the economic, environmental and societal benefits associated with the programme.”